3 degrees of glory explained.
This is not only hilarious, it sounds pretty on-the-mark too. It's a simplified version of Section 76 in the Doctrine and Covenants, where it states that people in one kingdom can visit the lower levels, but no one can visit the levels up from them (verses 86-88).
From Sista Beehive at http://www.sistasinzion.com/2010/04/i-wonder-if-heaven-got-ghetto.html.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
I was visiting with a few of my girls the other day, and one of our sistas who isn't LDS commented that she appreciated the VIP Heaven that we LDS folk have, you know the three Heavens, she said, because I just don’t think I want to be in the same Heaven as my Mother. (I've probably had that thought a few times myself.)
While engaged in this conversation, another sista bore her testimony about the three degrees of glory.
[name redacted]: When I was a child, Tupac had a popular song out where he asked the question, “Does Heaven have a Ghetto?” That struck a cord with me in my childhood, so much so, that I asked my Mother the very same question. She explained that her belief was that, in Heaven the Lord would want us to be comfortable, and because paradise was different to every person, it was entirely possible that Heaven did have a Ghetto. My mother and I always thought that this was something we would have to wait until we got to Heaven to find out. So, when at the age of 14, I started taking the missionary discussions and Sister Butterworth told me about the three degrees of glory, the Celestial, the Terrestrial, and the Telestial Kingdoms. I knew the church had to be true, because Heaven had a Ghetto. It was also interesting to know that the Lord would answer a childhood question of mine. Plus in VIP Heaven (Celestial) you can go visit people in the other degrees of Heaven, but they can't come visit you! For example, my family in South Central can't come visit me in Beverly Hills, but I can go visit them in South Central. Yes, Heaven got a Ghetto/Trailer Park.
Of course our non-LDS sista was now even more curious so we broke it down for her.
Telestial Kingdom: This is the place for those who don't know how to follow the rules. If you don't know how to abide by the law, you might end up in the Telestial Kingdom. In the Telestial Kingdom you are stationary. It’s not prison, but a similar concept. You can make collect calls to your friends and family in the higher Kingdoms, you can beg for a visit, and they’ll come if they want to. No passing contraband from the other Kingdoms to the people in the Telestial Kingdom. It’s nothing like the Penitentiary (not that I know what that’s like). It’s nicer, more like where Martha Stewart went. You don’t have to visit through the glass, no one is going to shank you, and you don’t have to worry about your celly snitching on you. While it’s not quite lock down, it’s not all roses though, because you don’t get to leave. No outside visits, no leaving your Kingdom.
Terrestrial Kingdom: This is like a "middle class neighborhood". In this neighborhood, there are people who are good, kind, and who actually tried to live a decent life. They tried to do right, and still recognized that Christ was the Savior, yet didn't develop a personal relationship with God the Father. Now this place is much nicer than the Telestial Kingdom. You’re not rolling in a Lexus, but you do get a bus pass. There’s nothing wrong with public transportation, shoot, a bus pass is a privilege, cause that means you get to travel! You can visit all your friends in the Telestial Kingdom. However, that’s it though, cause your line doesn’t run up town.
Celestial Kingdom: Now this is what Brigham Young was talking about! This is the place! This is an all access pass. This is the Kingdom that you inherit if you have lived up to all the covenants that have been required of you. In this neighborhood, you really do get to leave your doors unlocked and everything is fine. If your address is 2438 North Celestial Boulevard, then you have arrived. The best part about living in this neighborhood is that the "Stationary" and "Bus Pass" friends and family can't just stop in and case your house. No one can try to make you feel bad because you have nicer things than they do. They have to call and invite you to visit them... and you got the free agency to say we’re not available. Now what I hope is that we have caller I.D. in the Celestial Kingdom, for just in case we don't feel like answering the phone.
But then we had to drop the BOMB… the Celestial Kingdom has a VVIP! So if you should be one of those who has earned a mansion in the Celestial Kingdom, don't be shocked if you look around one day and find there is an area that is sectioned off, with Porter Rockwell guarding all of "us" VVIP folk. Please don't think I can get you in, chances are I barely got in myself. However I will tell Jesus, Joseph Smith, Mother Teresa, Gandhi, my Mama and my Daddy that you said hello.
Peace & Love,